Formula One is regarded by many as an ultimate sport that stands at the top pedestal among the world's most keenly followed sporting events for the unparalleled racing fest it offers to spectators from around the world. Producing, race after race, a battle of epic proportions, while F1 fuels tremendous interest and emotional participation among fans who remain dazed to see world's fastest men in their speed machines compete with each other in a contest for domination for speed, it imposes upon racing drivers a excruciating task that outlives the duration of the entire racing season.
It is easy and fairly simple to remember which driver emerged on top over his adversaries and nothing less than a bitter-sweet moment to treasure the cheerful victories of some of the most popular racing teams, but it is quite indefinable to comprehend both the physical and physiological challenges that drivers have to contend with. And not just during the race whilst driving to compete but even in important periods during race preparations. That said, these challenges aren't ordinary asks they can shy away from but in fact, scathing tasks they have to literally master.
We commonly forget that while drivers enjoy posing on the podiums spraying the champagne and enjoy the incomparable pleasure at receiving all the attention and adulation winning races or having bagged competitive race finishes, they subject themselves to an excruciatingly competitive and domineeringly challenging fitness to attain these grand moments that lift them up to soak in all the fun.
Maneuvering cars that weigh over 650 kgs whilst competing in rigorous race weekends that consist not only the all important Sunday's but even the intensely important qualifying events where drivers sweat and hydrate at extraordinary levels, losing up to 4 kgs of body weight at the end of every race and contending with an extremely high heart-rate, one cannot not afford to be at the peak of personal fitness in order to compete in a real test of nerves and painstaking physical stamina.
We take a look at some drivers who aren't just competitive race winners and driving aces but are at the peak of their athletic abilities that have accounted to their tremendous success in Formula One. In addition, we look their rigorous techniques and fitness regimens that they follow to maintain their exceptional fitness at the pinnacle of motor racing.
By his own admission, 34 year old Finn, Heikki Kovalainen is a fitness freak. Having competed in Formula One for 7 competitive seasons, leading promising but not particularly exciting stints for McLaren and Lotus where he last raced in 2013 season has done little to dull an extremely fit and agile Kovalainen's fitness regimen.
An exceptional athlete who barely weighs 60 kilograms and participates in fitness training and rigorous body workouts unfailingly every week, Heikki in a way is our Usain Bolt in the glamorous world of Formula One, if not for speed but for pure athleticism.
A man who can be best described as a happy go lucky soul off the track but equally focus while on it, Kovalainen has worked particularly well to sculpt an all round athletic and supremely adept physical frame. A steady pulse of 58 beats per minute can be pretty unnerving to other drivers whose pulse goes up to 80 beats per minute.
Having long competed in regular marathon and sprint racing events, the Suomussalmi-born Finn has a discerning view on the importance of maintaining all round fitness if one has to successfully compete and survive the rigors of F1 which, if not handled with composure and a certain mental elasticity can be damaging in the long run.
For Kovalainen, presently competing in Super GT in Japan, a popular grand super car racing event that began in the land of the rising sun two decades ago, has often shared that a good way to describe the life of an F1 driver is to concede that he runs marathons with racing cars for 19 strenuous contests.
The need to partake in neck training, Aerobic training, Stretching followed by mediation and jogging necessitates the true makings of an extremely fit F1 driver and being devoted to these important constituents in all body work-out program, Kovalainen also reserves a special interest and passion for Watt Biking among competing in regular sprinting events.
But while the twists and turns of the racing tracks did not do much to add to Kovalainen's s tally of F1 points, which stand only at a modest 105 upon debuting way back in 2007, his phenomenal fitness levels have paved way toward adding the necessary rhythm, balance and stamina it takes to compete in rigorous sporting events such as Race of the Champions and the Super GT, where the Finn has raced with aplomb with significant measure.